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Washington at Mount Vernon

by Charles Albano

On a late fall morning,
before the sun
took the chilly fog from the air,
I imagined him walking within these
red brick walls,
alone,
contemplating the fruits and flowers
that had blossomed
and since withered
in this English garden.

In this quiet space,
contemplating
the inconceivable
as he communed with history's
liberators,
under his breath at first,
and I imagine the uncertain
fruits and flowers
of the coming revolution
first took form here
in this beautiful garden,
in vaguely felt chaos--
until a tornado
arose
in his soul.

His vision
must have been compelling
to inspire such courage
in the face of
immense uncertainty,
to risk everything
held dear.
I wonder if he sensed he
would be buried here,
victorious
and immortal,
here where the fruits and flowers
of patriotic dreams
continue to blossom
long after his
longest winter?




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